Sonex 1404

Posts Tagged ‘SNX-T09-01

I got the shipment of AN hardware from Wick’s and finished up the vertical stabilizer main (rear) spar. I had to enlarge the holes of the 1/8″ thick spacer because they were not aligned perfectly with the angle bracket, but since that spacer is disposable, I don’t care how big the holes are on it.

I am curious to see how exactly the spacer is useful on this assembly. With it in, the AN3-7 bolts have no thread sticking above the nut after torquing it to about 25 inch-lbs. I checked and re-checked everything just to make sure I didn’t miss anything. Moreover, I don’t know if it is such a good idea to tighten the nuts now and remove them later to remove the spacer plate. I might have to put in new nuts at that point.


Last night I primed the parts for the forward and aft spars for the vertical stabilizer. The priming job is  a lot better this time around, and hopefully it will only improve going forward. I’ve converted my guest bathroom (which we don’t use) into a priming booth which works well since it has an exhaust fan. I hung some clothes hangers on the shower curtain rod and put some binder clips on it. I clip the parts to be primed at one corner and just spray the rattle-can primer onto the surface so that all the excess spray goes into the shower. It doesn’t stick to the tiles or the tub, which is great. The only problem is that if I spray too much, it runs down the part to the corner and doesn’t stick to the surface as well.

This morning I decided to assemble the spars. I don’t have a torque wrench yet so I decided to do the riveting today and apply the bolts when my wrench arrives. Which brings me to my “doh” moment of this week. Instead of putting one of the spar straps on the inside of the channel, I put it on the outside and promptly riveted it all together. That teaches me not to start on stuff when I’m still not completely awake.

My first experience drilling out pop-rivets was a bit nerve-wracking. I was worried that I would enlarge the holes, so I used a #32 drill bit which worked beautifully in getting the rivet heads out. I then used an old #30 rivet to punch the rivet bodies out of the holes. I checked the holes to see if I had damaged any but they all looked clean.

I cleaned up the parts to make sure there were no pieces of aluminum lying around and riveted them – properly this time. The forward spar assembly was a piece of cake and I’m glad to report that my wife did the riveting on this one.

I went looking for inch-pound torque wrenches at Sears and Menards, but neither had any. Sears had a “click” type on sale for $70 but the lowest it went was 25 inch-lbs, which is at the higher end of what’s needed for the AN3 hardware. I think I’ll just order one online.